Saturday Seed ~ 105 (Call of Cthulhu)

This week’s seed is for Call of Cthulhu. It is an extremely small seed, but packed with menace sent in the mail.

The seed
One of the characters (or a supporting character of personal importance to the Investigators) receives a small package in the mail addressed in their own handwriting. What’s inside is the first slice of a journey into personal madness.

Planting the seed
This seed may work best for a very small group, such as just 1 or 2 players. For larger groups, you may wish to have the primary recipient of madness in the tale be an NPC of importance to the group, rather than a group member. Experience for the characters is not all that important, but I would recommend running this for experienced players. The seed can begin at any time that the designated recipient I would run this in the 20’s or 30’s but there is no need beyond preference for a certain period.

The Details
This seed begins with and mainly consists of deliveries of small packages to a character through the regular mail. It should likely get noted with the very first package, either before or after it is opened, that there is no return address. It should later become apparent that the writing on the package is the recipient’s own. Analysis of the writing will turn up indications of stress or poor physical condition, but it is unmistakably the writing of the recipient.

Inside the package there is an array of the fingertips from the index, middle, and ring fingers, neatly sliced from a hand, with the slice from the shortest finger of the three (the ring finger) being about 2mm in thickness. The slices rest on a delicate silk cloth wrapped about a rectangular porcelain dish suitable for sauces, such as might be found in an authentic Chinese restaurant, and under a nearly translucent and tightly wrapped layer of silk to hold them in place. The box is stuffed with wood shavings to keep everything nicely in position within the small delivery box. The slices are perfect, bloodless, and seem oddly… alive for all that.

The next day, a similar slice of the same three fingers arrives, wrapped up the same way. This ongoing progression of slices from the same hand and limb will continue throughout the scenario. Depending on how you wish to handle the speed of resolution of this seed, when the last slice of arm is sent, it will move on to the leg on the same side and work its way to the hip before going over to the other leg.

Investigation will be able to prove via fingerprints and even visual recognition/comparison, that the slices are identical to the recipient’s. Sanity losses, will obviously be a significant factor in this tale.

How and why one could and would send thin slices of one’s own body to oneself  is a tough set of questions to resolve, and I leave it to you to set up what the answers might be in the context of your own campaign. For me, it would involve something even more peculiar than this already is.

What is going on

If it were me running a scenario like this, I would have the slices definitely be from the recipient, and have them actually being delivered in the mail, but also through time such that they appear in the daily sort without anyone in the recipient’s time being aware of how they got there. They just are. Like calls to like, you know.

At a certain stage, when/if the pieces are put near each other to be examined, they will begin to draw together, seeking to reform. The conclusion that should more pieces arrive that they will do the same, would seem sound even to the most illogical observer.

The questions will remain, why? how? from when?  I would be looking for signs that the players are wondering if this is in fact malevolent at all, or something else entirely… like an escape from something far worse…


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